Weather

Summer’s End

Well, maybe for some of you…

I’m sure you know by now that I live in Floriduh. We don’t really have seasons here. At least not like the rest of the world.

We do get winter. It lasts about 2 days, usually in February. We have lived where there were all four seasons. North Carolina has all four seasons, the Army saw fit to send us there twice. It didn’t snow all that much during those two tours, but we did get some. Alaska on the other hand, was lots of snow. It did hit 95 F once, for about 90 minutes during the very brief summer. I think it was a Tuesday that we had summer that year. And we did get 24 hours daylight during this time, not quite 24 hours of dark. We were not quite north enough for that. The least sunlight we received would be about 15 minutes. The sun would come up, move over about a half an inch then drop back down. And it was so very cold.

The Autumn equinox is coming up; Monday, 23 September actually. I can see the subtle differences outside. When I leave for work in the morning, before the sun comes up, the humidity is much lower. Not that it’s gone, it’s just that the dew point occurs after I leave, so my windshield is dry. That won’t last long of course. By mid-December, I’ll be dealing with it all over again. Plus those few days where the dew turns to a very light frost on the windshield. All it takes to clear it is about 3 minutes of the defroster on high. No need to scrape.

This is my favorite time of year. Not only is the weather a little marginally cooler, my two favorite holidays are coming up. Samhain (Halloween for some) and Thanksgiving.

Last year we took the wee bonnie lasses to a “Fall Festival” as we try to do every year. But last year we almost got heat stroke while in the corn maze! It was extremely hot and muggy. And no beer! Only water and sports drinks, although the coffee and hot chocolate were selling briskly. Go figure.

I do hope that wherever you are you get whichever seasons you enjoy the most. Maybe you’re like me and want to just move around to enjoy the variety of all the seasons. Personally, I do not enjoy snow all that much. I don’t mind the cold temperatures, I just don’t care for the white stuff. Having said that, we are taking the wee bonnie lasses to the mountains of Western North Carolina just after Christmas this year. They have been asking to see snow for several years. Hopefully, that will happen. But you never know, the weather is a fickle bitch.

It took me sometime to decide which video to use (and there’s always a video isn’t there?). I was thinking of Summer by War, or Summertime by Janis Joplin. Instead, I went with this one. Enjoy!

Peace,
B

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What’s Up With Mother Nature?

And why does she hate #Floriduh so?

I realize that stories of #FloridaMan and #FloridaWoman are all over the place, and that my home state has a bad rap. But what did we do to piss off Mother Nature this time?

Yes, they’re coming for us!

Maybe it’s just me. We moved back to #Floriduh in 1996. 1997 was the year of wildfires. We were evacuated from our house (which we had just moved into) 3 times. In all truth, my yard still hasn’t fully recovered. Then in 2004 it was the year of 4 hurricanes.

Yikes!

Ivan was probably the most powerful of the 4, but it didn’t come near us. Charley, on the other hand, went directly overhead. But it wasn’t all that powerful. Son-the-elder’s FLANG unit was deployed basically the entire summer doing hurricane relief all over the state. He had his picture in many local newspapers. They also provided relief for hurricanes Katrina and Michael, and probably more that I can’t recall right now.

We are not under any serious danger with “#9” just off the coast. It is expected to become a named storm “Humberto” sometime in the next 24 – 36 hours. The current track has it just off the coast, following in Dorian’s footsteps. As of this writing, no EOC activation has been discussed.

And the models have it moving further off shore, again, just like Dorian.

Luckily we had no big plans this weekend. Our god sons first birthday is today, and there’s plans for a small party tomorrow, and some wind and rain won’t bother that. Hopefully.

Since we are looking at yet another rainy weekend (Sunshine State?? I call shenanigans). Here’s a video about another rainy season. Enjoy! (And sing along too)

Peace,
B

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In The Early Morning Rain

‘Cause that’s about all we’ve had from this hurricane. But I’m not complaining. The folks in the Bahamas really got hit hard. Dorian was over Abaco and Grand Bahama Island for damn near 24 hours. The islands are devastated. This makes me very sad. I really like Freeport.

But here in #Floriduh, at least in my area, just some rain and wind. But then, isn’t that exactly what a hurricane is? Wind and rain?

So here I sit deep in an undisclosed location in the bowls of a dormant volcano, somewhere in.. uh.. can’t say where. Day 2 in the EOC. Yesterday was long. A full 12 hour shift on about 4 hours sleep. Almost felt like I was back in the Army. Just with air-conditioning. But the same old jokes and lousy food, but no MREs (YEAH!!!).

The storm is about 100 miles due east of us. It only took about 12 hours for it to reach us as it was stationary for a very long time, then slowly moved north west. It has picked up speed, but is still moving very slowly. Current speed estimate is 8 MPH.

No track today, but here is a radar shot;

The western edge of the storm is hitting the coast, but not much.

I should say that we are currently just over halfway through hurricane season. This is the height of the season as well; as this image shows.

That yellow X over the western coast of Africa is out next worry. All the others are not going to bother land, but that storm is still an “unknown”, but it does have a 60% chance of becoming something “known”.

My house, and my brother’s house (he lives about 45 minutes west of me), have not any real issues. He did lose power for about an hour, but luckily bourbon doesn’t need refrigeration, so he made it through just fine.

Right now, our city manager says he hopes to close the EOC around 5 PM this evening, and we’ll return to a more regular schedule tomorrow. Sound good to me.

One thing I noticed on the way in yesterday and today was that almost every fast food place was closed. All the McDonalds, Dunkin’s, and Taco Hell Bell were dark and gloomy. But the Subway was open. Yesterday the local “greasy spoon” was open, but not this morning. Roads are basically clear. Only a few scattered palm fronds here and there.

I picked out a video that actually goes with the topic. I was going to use Gordon Lightfoot’s Early Morning Rain, but choose this one instead. I used Lightfoot’s song for the title (call it a two-for-one). Enjoy!

Some REO Cookies for ya!

Peace,
B

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Still Waiting…

Yes, it’s Labor Day here in the USA, and we are laboring. We haven’t started any painting yet this morning simply because we are worn out. But, all we have left are two little hallways so we have plenty of time.

As far as the storm goes, it’s not much different than yesterday. Hurricane Dorian is still a Cat 5 storm (but the sustained winds have dropped to 165 MPH from 185 MPH) and is still very dangerous. The biggest problem is that it has basically stalled over Grand Bahama Island. The forward movement is down to 1 MPH. Toddlers can crawl faster than that.

Image courtesy of the National Hurricane Center

As of the 5AM (EDT) updates, we don’t expect tropical storm force winds until tomorrow, 3 September, about 0800. Which is when I have to report to the EOC. Let’s hope my truck doesn’t get blown off the road.

This image is from the Weather Underground (again, NOT the 1960’s radical group). This shows the four models for the storm’s track. What is striking about this graph is that all the models have finally come so close together. Just yesterday there was still one model (GFS) that had the storm making landfall, now they’re all offshore. There are still some differences as to just how far offshore.

The GFS track still has it closest to the coast. We’re still hoping the the Euro model holds true.

I’ll make one more pass through the yard this afternoon just to make sure everything is picked up and stored away. Then one more test of the generator and I’m calling prep work done.

My biggest concern this morning is breakfast. I’m hungry!

You knew this one was coming…

Peace,
B

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Hurricane Update…

Bet y’all thought I forgot to post about Hurricane Dorian yesterday. I didn’t forget, we are going ahead with our Labor Day house painting plans, so I was a bit busy.

And just so you know how serious we take this storm, I give you this;

Phase One of the “Fuck Hurricane Dorian” supply run. Which doesn’t show the wine in the fridge. Also not pictured is the beer, because we already drank it.

A quick storm update as I have to get back to painting. It’s looking like the EOC will activated at 0700 tomorrow morning. I should know more this evening.

This is the 5AM forecast track – hot off the electron press;

Image courtesy of the National Hurricane Center

The track has the storm farther east again, and moving at a paltry 8 MPH. My grandmother can move faster than that, and she’s been dead a really long time! This crawl will allow the storm to grow even stronger, and totally messes with the track. Too much time over open water just makes the storm even more unpredictable. Also, it’s not expected to be close to us until Wednesday or so. Hopefully, this means the EOC opening can be pushed back a bit. But, Tropical Storm force winds are expected to be felt here sometime Monday. So who knows.

Here’s today’s “only using this because it has hurricane in the title” video. And yes, I know I’m really stretching it this time.

Peace,
B

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Trying To Reason…

About dinner time last night I received notice that my EOC (Emergency Operation Center) is expected to be activated at 0700 Sunday, 1 September. </sigh>

Now, this morning I see that the track has moved even more south (good for me and my family), but has also slowed down (bad for everyone). If the storm slows down even a little bit this will give it time to gain strength. What was predicted to be a measly cat2, now looks like it may be a much more dangerous cat4. Not to mention, the longer it sits out there the more variation on it’s track. Take a look at the 5 AM (EDT) forecast. The “Cone of Uncertainty” covers the entire damn state of #Floriduh. Due to two high pressure systems to the northeast and northwest of the system which may, or may not, push it around. This also means that there really isn’t anywhere in the state to evacuate to. So, where will it go?

“Nobody knows”

Chuckie Finster ~ Rug Rats.
Note the circle around the entire damn state! It’s a crap shoot I tell ya.

The thing that I’m having issues with (and this is entirely personal), is the planned activation of of the EOC on Sunday morning. I think it’s too early to activate. The storm will still be way east of us on Monday morning. I understand the need to get things in order BEFORE it gets hairy (retired Army guy here). But some of us still have things to do at our residences. Basically, it’s just me and Wifey at home. Son-the-elder is deployed overseas with his Army unit, son-the-younger works damn near every night, and with my broke down back and legs, and Wifey being the “little woman” that she is, we can’t move some of the larger stuff that needs to be moved. Hopefully son-the-younger will be able to do most of it today and tomorrow (he’s supposed to be off of work).

Since we are natives of south #Floriduh (which deserves that hashtag so much more than the rest of the state), we tend to have a somewhat more of a “wait and see” attitude towards these here storms. It’s not that we don’t care, it’s we know they tend to be hyped more than they are. Not always, Andrew, Katrina, and Michael were storms that deserved every bit of the hype. They were monster storms. We treat these events with respect. Meanwhile the rest of the state panics.

It is what it is. So, until my next update, here’s a video that may actually have some bearing on the entire situation (but probably not)..

Peace,
B

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The Time Of The Season

Faithful readers of this blog will know that my last post mentioned a certain tropical storm was headed my way. Well, that hasn’t changed. In fact since I wrote (and edited) that post, lots of things have changed. And then changed again. And changed some more. Some things even went back to what they were at the start of this whole shebang.

Here was the storm track then;

Note the last projected location on the map. The storm went way east of there.

And here is this morning’s track (as of 0800 EDT);

Image courtesy of the National Hurricane Center

Yes! Once again #Floriduh is dead in the sights of another hurricane. Sheesh!

On the plus side, it’s expected (more like hoped for) to be less intense than just yesterday’s models. Those had it as a Category 3 storm and sitting about 100 miles due east of my house Monday morning. Now it will (again, hopefully) make land fall about 100 miles south of me as a weak Cat 2. This, sadly, will mean my brother can expected an almost direct hit.

On the bad side is most models have it turning north once it hits the center of the state. This has two issues. First, it puts my area on that dreaded NE quadrant again. That will be the most intense section of the storm. Second, this will be my home for the weekend;

Notice the lack of beer and food. Not to mention sleeping areas.

For this storm my team has been assigned the day shift. We’ve been night shift for all previous storms. My guess for this change is because the last two storms the day shift has been stuck at the EOC for 24 hours when the storm hit, while those of us on nights just did the planned 12 hour shift. I think my manager is hoping to reverse this trend. Not gonna happen.

So, once again, a storm has ruined plans for a 3-day weekend. Now granted, this was a “working” 3-day weekend as we had planned to start painting the inside of the house. We may still be able to get some of the work done, at least the major prep stuff. But if it’s raining too hard painting is out of the question. Paint doesn’t seem to dry very well when the humidity is 1000%.

So here’s a video that only relates to the post because I used it’s title for the title of this post…

Enjoy!

Peace,
B

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Weather Musings…

I won’t go into climate change much here, other than to say I do believe that things are changing much faster than expected. The fires in the Arctic coupled with the fires in the Amazon River basin tell you that things aren’t quite right with dear ol’ mother nature. Add to that the fact that the American Pacific Northwest has not received anywhere near the proper amount of rain this summer. This means that the salmon runs are not happening. The rivers are too low for the salmon to swim upstream to spawn, and the water temperature is too warm and it’s killing the fish, not just salmon. (One source: https://www.msn.com/en-us/weather/topstories/half-of-columbia-river-sockeye-salmon-dying-due-to-hot-water/ar-AAdxQ7H). There is a counter report that the fish kill was due to a “harvesting” accident (https://apnews.com/afs:Content:6854150153), so I’m not which to believe.

Much closer to home, it’s hurricane season. Nothing out of the ordinary, it happens every year. At the moment there are two systems in the Atlantic Ocean. One is actually over south Florida, but it isn’t expected to be too big of deal. Just some rain and wind. It’s that red circle “Five” that needs watching.

Image courtesy of the National Hurricane Center

Number 5 is far away from Floriduh. This means two basic things. First, it has time to grow. How strong a hurricane it can become is anyone’s guess right now. Second, it could go anywhere. It maybe, just might, turn north and just spin out in the Atlantic and only give the shipping industry problems. Or, it might just set its sights on my house and head here, building up to a category 11 storm. (NOTE: Currently the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale “only” goes to 5, but I like to turn things up to 11 when I can. Link requires Flash enabled, sorry.) Not to mention that now that we have the kitchen wall fixed, it’s time to start repairing the whole house. Everything from repainting to tiling. I ain’t got no time for no damn hurricane.

Image courtesy of the National Hurricane Center

Even the wonderful folks at Weather Underground (not the 60’s radical group) haven’t got much of a clue. In the past 5 years or so the European model has been the most accurate, it’s too early for them to have modeled this storm.

Image courtesy of The Weather Underground

If number 5 becomes a named storm (Dorian is the next name on the list), then things get a little more real. As a member of my employers “Emergency Operations Staff”, I can get called in at any time the storm is expected to threaten my area. And that’s not fun. But it is necessary.

EDITORS NOTE: While I was composing this post, the storm became Tropical Depression Dorian. No, I am not psychic (psychotic maybe), I’ve just been around tropical storms too long.

Not saying it’s hot or anything…

So, how’s the weather where you are??

Yeah, I know it’s not Monday…

Peace,
B

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Celebrate Good Times (Come On)!

Yesterday we had the final celebration of Wifey® and granddaughter-the-elder’s birthdays. Since they both have birthday’s on or around the 4th, and we live in a tourist area, sometimes we have to do our celebrating in stages. Plus it’s more fun to keep the celebrations going for a while! Then this morning, Wifey® reminded me that today is our 73rd six-month anniversary. Yes, we celebrate every six months since that was how long we were told we would last. Ha!

So yesterday the family went to Universal City Walk and had a great time. It was all son-the-younger’s idea. Since Wifey® and I both agree we have too much stuff, we would rather do things with whichever family members we can get together. Son-the-younger picked Blueman Group, and since none of us have ever seen that show, I immediately agreed.

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My fam-damily!

And boy did we pick a hell of a day!  The rain was so bad on the way over to Orlando, we could barely see the hood of the car. But there was no rain in Orlando (surprise!). We had crazy heat. Well maybe not crazy, after all, we are Florida natives (except for son-the-younger, he’s our “token Eskimo” – he was born in Alaska).

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Feels like 108!

So our basic “plan” (we never have a plan – or if we do we don’t follow it), was to get to City Walk around 3PM, walk around and shop a bit, then catch an early dinner and the finally the Blueman Group show at 6PM. But as luck would have it, we sat down at the Lone Palm Bar (part of Margaritaville) and had a few beers. Son-the-younger took his girls and walked around. They found the hot dog stand. And they know that I love hot dogs. But, even cooler, they found stadium seats from some major league stadiums! They also know that papa loves baseball!

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My baby girls in the doughnut chair

Once we realized that we had missed our time for an early dinner, we decided that another round of beers was in order and that we would go to the theater and wait for the show.

Since it was so hot and humid outside, the theater was like an ice-box. But man did it feel good! Plus we were allowed to bring in our drink and snacks! I won’t give much of a review of the show as I don’t want to spoil it for anyone that hasn’t had the pleasure of seeing it.

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Beer, popcorn, and Minecraft swords! Oh, my!

The Blueman Group show was totally awesome! I have not laughed that hard in a long time. I was already fighting a head cold and scratchy throat before we went, so now I can hardly talk. But it was completely worth it. wp-1531740904422..jpg

After the show, we went to the restaurant that we used as a ruse to plan this whole adventure. We didn’t tell Wifey® about the show, only we were going to dinner. But since we had waited so long, there was now an hour wait. What to do? What else, go have another beer!  So back around the park, we go back to the Lone Palm Bar. But our very cool server, Bethany, was off shift now. But we only had time for one beer, so it was all good.

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It was 9PM or so by the time we got to eat. The girls were very hungry, almost to the point of feeling sick. But the milkshakes they had took care of that quickly. I will say I was not happy with my meal, but I don’t blame the restaurant. By this time I was feeling so bad, between the heat and the head cold, that nothing would have tasted good to me.  Everybody else said their meals were great, so I’ll take the heat on this one.

Other than stupid Orlando traffic, and all the damn construction, the drive home was a little easier. Traffic on I-4 (AKA The Devil’s Highway), which according to a recent study is the most dangerous road in America, was light. But we still didn’t get home until midnight.

But all in all, a most spectacular evening! I highly recommend Blueman Group. We’ve already made plans to bring the girls to the Universal Theme Park and Harry Potter.  Stay tuned for that review!

So, how was your weekend?

Peace,
B

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To Follow Up

This morning I tweeted this:

tweet

For those not here in Floriduh, basically, it’s rained something like 12 or 13 days straight. Here’s my other post on this nasty weather.

But this morning the sun came up so very, very bright. It was much like this…

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Walking in with a co-worker this morning from the parking lot, and she said “It was so bright when I was getting ready for work, I had to check what time it was. I thought I was late!”

But alas, it won’t stay.  My favorite weatherman Brian Shields over at WFTV says we can expect about four more inches of rain over the weekend. This won’t bother me so much, as my plan for the weekend is finishing the floor. (See here and here about the floor).  But I do worry that all the rain means that the little girls will have nothing to do and will be underfoot all weekend. </sigh>

But we’ll get through it. As of today, we are nowhere near the May record rainfall. Last I looked we are just under 6 inches of total rain this month. The record is almost 14 inches, set in 2009 I believe.

So, tell me, “How’s the weather where you are”?

And this song has nothing to do with the weather, but it is about “Sunshine”. And it’s one of my all-time favorite songs.

Peace,
B

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(I really should stop linking to my FB page. I never go there anymore…)